by Adam Sobsey
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="275" caption="Jason Isringhausen was promoted to Tampa."][/caption]With outfielder/DH Pat Burrell placed on the disabled list, Jason Isringhausen was called up to Tampa yesterday. The move was as much one of scheduling as anything else: Minor-league rehab assignments for pitchers expire after 30 days, so Izzy would have to have been moved by tomorrow anyway. It isn't clear what the Rays will do when Burrell returns (he was DL'd retroactive to May 11, so he could be back in just over a week), but with any luck
someone else will pull a muscle the Rays will make another move before that happens.
No word yet on a corresponding minor-league roster move to add a player to Durham. Failing other solutions, catcher Alex Jamieson is in "Hudson Valley," a.k.a. the Bulls' dugout, and could become a Bull again with as little as a change of uniform. I'll try to remember to ask Charlie Montoyo about it tonight.
Isringhausen showed glimpses of effectiveness in Durham. At his best he forced hitters to swing at his pitches and produced outs by letting his fielders do their work behind him. But a good deal of that glovework was done by outfielders, and Izzy could turn out to be a Scary Fly Ball Guy in the majors. He recorded zero strikeouts in his seven innings of work as a Bull, posting a 5.14 ERA in six appearances. Nonetheless, he's an intelligent and aggressive pitcher, and he still throws hard enough to succeed as a setup arm for Rays' closer Troy Percival. Of greater concern is the possibility that Percival gets injured and Isringhausen gets the nod as his replacement. Right now, it's hard to see that working, essentially just swapping one breakdown-prone old pickup truck for another. But that, as they say, is why they play the games.
On an unalloyed happy note, Chris Richard was named the International League Player of the Week for an obvious reason. But Richard's production last week wasn't limited to his historic Friday night. Here are his lines for the week and season:
G AVG H AB R 2B 3B HR RBI SLUG BB SB
7 .429 12 28 6 5 0 3 13 .929 2 0 (WEEK)
33 .281 34 121 21 10 0 9 29 .587 18 0 (SEASON)
Richard had more than half of his season's hits, exactly half of his doubles, and almost half of his RBIs, in just seven games. His alphabet-soup stats (OBP, SLG, OPS etc.) for the week were ridonculous. And as Charlie Montoyo told me after the second of Richard's grand slams on Friday night won the ballgame, "it couldn't have happened to a better guy."
See you at the DBAP tonight.